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Part One: Appreciate

Droplet

The Consumer Detox begins with appreciation. If we’re already satisfied, amazed, delighted and fully engaged with life, how can anyone sell us something we don’t need?

 

1. THANKSGIVING

As consumers we’re always being encouraged to want more. This can make us feel needy or incomplete. Instead we need to develop the habit of thanksgiving.

ACTION: PRAY

For the next few days, let your prayers be ONLY thanks. Make several extended times through the day just to thank God (1 Tim 4:4).

  

2. SAVOURING

If God ‘richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment’ (1 Timothy 6:17) then Christians should be among the best life-savourers around. This means living each moment for itself; not worrying about the future, or trying to fight time. It also means abandoning sour-faced prudishness and learning to savour God’s good creation to the full.

ACTION: ENJOY

Choose a couple of activities to simply savour – let your senses run wild, and enjoy them to the absolute limit! (E.g., a deep breath, an ice cream, a trip, rain, an expensive meal, some music…)

 

3. REVALUING

Have you ever stopped to think how many things in life cost money but are actually worthless? What about all the things of great value that don’t have a pricetag?  Money is sometimes important. But re-valuing is about realising how empty the promises of consumerism can be. It’s also about making time to wonder at all the things God gives to us for free.

ACTION: FAST

Miss 2-3 meals (if you can), and take the opportunity to consider all we take for granted.

 

4. ECO-AWARENESS

Care for creation includes taking delight in the variety and complexity of the natural world around us. Then we can truly appreciate the Creator’s handiwork (1 Kings 4:33, Psalm 104). Without a better awareness of our place on the planet, we won’t know why a narrow consumer life is so poor or how it can damage our environment.

ACTION: RESEARCH

Where does your water come from?  Where does your rubbish go?

From where you live: where is north?  What are the prevailing winds?

Where is the nearest coastline?  Where is your fruit & veg grown?

What animals and plants live near you?  What threatens them?

 

5. MAKING LIFE DEEPER

We’re not made to live life through screens, a hundred times removed from everything real. We’re made for a deep connection with the people around us and with God’s creation.

ACTION: CONSIDER

Deep Stuff – List things you do which are skillful, connected to others in person, get ‘hands on’ with God’s creation, need concentration and teamwork, are creative, costly, risky and satisfying (e.g., cooking, musical instruments)

Shallow Stuff – List things which are push-button, isolated, virtual or easy

Ask: how can I clear space to focus on the deep stuff?  Am I willing to live with less so that I can live more richly?  Plan 3 steps towards this.

 Part Two

Appreciate Quotes

Today is a gift.  That’s why it’s called ‘the present’!  

Unknown

 

Everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving 

1 Timothy 4:4

 

Command those who are rich in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment 

1 Timothy 6:17

 

If you don’t own the latest thing, it won’t go out of date.

If you don’t own much, you won’t have much to lose.

If you own less, you will value it more.

If you own only what you can carry, you will carry less baggage around with you.

Travel light.

Howies Clothing Company

 

It is fascinating. In the West, you have bigger homes, yet smaller families; you have endless conveniences – yet you never seem to have any time. You can travel anywhere in the world, yet you don’t cross the road to meet your neighbours; you have more food than you can eat, yet that makes many who are overweight miserable. I don’t think people have become more selfish, but their lives have become easier and that has spoilt them. They expect more, they constantly compare themselves to others and they have too much choice – which brings no real freedom 

The Dalai Lama

 

The spirit of poverty is to live in the gladness of today 

The Rule of Taize

Part Two

3 Comments leave one →
  1. February 17, 2015 2:10 pm

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Trackbacks

  1. The Original Consumer Detox « Breathe
  2. Final Reflections on Daily Thanks « Consumer Detox

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